2014 Quartz Reef "Bendigo Single Vineyard" Pinot Noir Central Otago (Biodynamic) (Elsewhere $45)

SKU #1237958 92 points Bob Campbell

 Quite a soft, approachable Pinot Noir with typical 2014 vintage charm. Ripe plum, prune, dark cherry, spice, anise and nutty oak flavours. Fine tannins with relatively soft acidity help promote drinkability.

91 points Allen Meadows - Burghound

 (Central Otago, from Demeter NZ certified, biodynamic fruit that is hand harvested, 14%). A relatively deeply pitched nose offers up notes of plum liqueur, dark cherry, plum and an appealing hint of spice. There is very good mid-palate concentration to the delicious and suave yet quite serious medium-bodied flavors that coat the palate with dry extract while delivering very fine depth and persistence on the reasonably well-balanced finale. This mildly warm effort should be more than capable of rewarding moderately extended cellaring.

90 points Vinous

 Bright, dark red. Crushed dark berries, pungent spices, minerals and licorice on the brooding nose. Penetrating, intense and sweet, with distinctly dark flavors of berries and minerals conveying an impression of inner-mouth energy. Displays lovely lingering perfume but needs time to expand. With its pliant but ultimately firm tannic spine, this very youthful dark-berry Central Otago Pinot has the structure to age. (90+)

90 points Wine & Spirits

 Rudi Bauer grows this pinot noir at his 38-acre Bendigo Estate, a Demeter-certified biodynamic vineyard planted on clay, gravel and quartz. He cools the must to soak it for close to a week before the native yeasts begin fermentation, and he leaves it to macerate once they’ve finished for up to 12 days, creating a powerful red, what Miles Hunter of NYC’s Public described as an “alpha wine.” The bold extract holds clean forest-berry flavor within tannins that compress it—the wine may feel reduced, but the reduction seems to lift it. For the cellar.  (4/2016)

Jancis Robinson

 Established 1996. Demeter-certified biodynamic vineyards. Owner and winemaker Austrian Rudi Bauer, who says that his Pinot is getting more structure as the vines age. Mid to deep cherry red. Sweet cherries and a touch of vanilla on the nose. No obvious sign of whole-bunch fermentation here and Bauer says the most he ever uses is about 5%. Dense and, at this stage, almost chewy on the palate. Much deeper texture than most in this tasting. Avoids any unnecessary sweetness on the palate. Rounded but compact. (JH)  (1/2016)

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Pinot Noir

- One of France's most legendary grapes and the grape that earned Burgundy its reputation. The parent of varietals like Pinot Gris/Grigio and Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir is blue to violet to indigo in color with relatively thin skins, and it is said to have been cultivated in France for more than 2,000 years. At its best, Pinot Noir creates elegant wines that are filled with primary red fruit aromas and flavors while young, revealing with an array of secondary characteristics like earth, smoke, violet, truffle and game with age. The varietal is also known, perhaps better than any, for its ability to translate terroir, or a sense of place. While the best Pinot Noir still comes from Burgundy, it is being produced with increasing success in cooler climates around the world. In France, it is part of the trifecta of grapes that can go into Champagne, and it is also grown in Alsace, Irancy, Jura, Savoie, Lorraine and Sancerre. Outside of France it is produced under the names Pinot Nero and Blauburgunder in Italy's mountainous regions, as Spätburgunder in Germany and as Blauburgunder in Austria. In the US, Pinot Noir has found suitable growing conditions in the cooler parts of California, including Carneros, the Russian River Valley, the Anderson Valley, the Sonoma Coast, Monterey County, the Santa Lucia Highlands and Santa Barbara County, as well as in Oregon's Willamette Valley. In recent years, New Zealand has demonstrated its ability to interpret this hard-to-grow varietal, with successful bottlings coming from careful and attentive growers in Central Otago, Martinborough and Canterbury. Chile is also an up-and-coming region for Pinot Noir, creating fresh, fruit-forward, early-drinking and affordable Pinots from the coastal Casablanca Valley and the Limari Valley.

New Zealand

- New Zealand is an extremely diverse wine-growing nation. The long history of producing wine started in the 1830s with wineries such as Mission Estate (1850) and Te Mata Estate (1896) still producing wine today. The two islands hold a multitude of different growing climates ranging from warmer areas such as Hawke’s Bay to very cool regions such as Waitaki, and Awatere. Most regions are defined as Maritime with the exception being Central Otago that has a moderate Continental climate with the high elevation creating dramatic diurnal swings in temperature. The plethora of grapes grown in New Zealand reflects this diverse microclimate make up. Everything has a place here, Bordeaux varietals and Syrah in Hawke’s Bay, Chardonnay and Pinot in Nelson, Pinot Noir and Riesling in Central Otago , aromatic whites in Waipara and pretty much everything you can imagine in Marlborough. New Zealand is also one of the “greenest” wine producing nations on earth (94% of wine certified sustainable in 2013) with a strong focus on organic and Biodynamic farming.
Alcohol Content (%): 14